"Every now & then there are experiences in one's life
that create a huge shift in one's psychic-events that are life altering.
My trip to India with Diane and Carol was one of those life altering events.
Sitting at the Norling Cafˇ at Norbulinka I wrote in my journal:
' I am sitting in the filtered sun, the birds singing, not quite able to
absorb it all- the contrast, the intensity- the beauty; the pollution; the
indescribable poverty; the feelings of love, sadness, joy & most of
all a feeling of intense appreciation for the human spirit. At some
level I sense that someplace deep inside a foundation of understanding is
forming which will help me live my life with more compassion, courage &
- Sally Jones
"The spiritual tour of 2000 led by Dianne Aigaki and
Carol Adrienne, and the magnificent
scenery of the Himalayas was a perfect match. Looking
out over these great
mountains on an early morning listening to the chant
of the monks --- magic.
The entire tour was packed full of activities, meeting
spiritual people of every level,
learning firsthand of the plight of the Tibetan
people, their culture and their beautiful
attitude. Visiting monasteries and nunneries, hearing
them talk about their lives
and spirituality and learning about their way of life
was a truly enlightening experience.
Dianne's enthusiasm and knowledge of the area, the
people, and the Tibetan culture
together with her forever cheerful personality made
this expedition both enjoyable
and memorable, one I will treasure for years to come.
Thank you Dianne!"
- Ruth Lund-Kijowski
"Visiting the Tibetan community in Dharamsala was more inspiring
than I even imagined. There was a magical chemistry present in
the grandeur of the scenery, the ancient cultures of India and
Tibet, the outstanding spiritual leaders with whom we met
privately, the people who came together from all over the world
for this trip, the natural good humor of everyone, and the
openness to new experiences that made this journey a true
The glue that held the magic
was Dianne Aigaki's knowledge of the area and her contacts and
relationships which brought us into the heart of the spiritual
community--not to mention her desire to serve the group, her
never-failing humor and her fearless leadership. Am I gushing?
I actually mean every word of it."
- Carol Adrienne, co-leader of the 2000 expedition.
"Having Dianne and Carol (Adrienne) as the dynamic duo of
energetic and spiritual tour guides of India manifested one of the
most memorable excursions we have ever had. We embarked on the
trip hoping to experience India and Dharamsala on terms only
an "insider" like Dianne could offer, but we discovered much
more. Yes, it proved to be an adventure on a recreational
level as we encountered the sites/shops of India, but importantly,
it proved to be an adventure on both spiritual and educational
We felt extremely fortunate in meeting with many
members and organizations of the Tibetan community of
Dharamsala. While they were grateful for our charitable
donations, we felt we received the greater gift for having
met them all. We left with a sense of spirit, knowledge and
understanding difficult to obtain through TV news, photos,
books or magazines. Getting to know Dianne, Carol and the
Tibetan and Indian communities proved to be the lasting of
all the memories..."
-May and Jeff Young
"Dharamsala 2000 wasn't a typical tourist tour. This kaleidoscopic
view of the Tibentan Life-in-Exile became a meaningful experience
through the personal, inspirational stories of the refugees'
struggles for escape from Chinese oppression and their efforts
in this beautiful Himalayan setting to preserve their traditions
of culture, religion, and language and to prepare for the return
to their homes and familes in Tibet eventually.
Our days were filled with opportunities to visit monasteries,
nunneries, temples, schools, museums, libraries, medical institutes,
and handicraft centers to learn about Tibetan ways. Individuals could
choose to participate or not according to their interests, needs, and
energy. Sometimes shopping or resting became priority options.
One of the most satisfying aspects of the tour was giving
directly to people or projects in need and seeing the immediate
effects for the living conditions and education of these wonderful
Due to Dianne's work with the Tibetan Government-in-Exile, we
had the privilege of meeting with some very special people like
the Dalai Lama's sister, Ghandi's grandson, and the Karmapa,
the future spiritual leader who had just escaped from Tibet.
Each encouter topped the next!
Our group was quite congenial and the trip was just long enough
to keep it that way. The most difficult part was the long bus
ride from Delhi to Dharamsala but the experience once there was
well worth it!"
- Carol A. Geer, Ph.D.
Santa Barbara, California
"Reflecting back on my experience is always pleasure; my trip
to Dharamsala was unique and I think I can say, absolutely
cathartic. The colors and landscapes are what I seem to remember
most; I found Diannes' India to be very beautiful... I can't
imagine a better way to experience that part of the world,
especially if it's your first time. It's all true; still such a
wonderful memory for me."
- Catherine Hackworth
"Dharamsala, was a great experience - actually India on the
whole was wonderful. It was a trip that I had always felt called
to do. For me it was a life changing event. I got to meet wonderful
people some of whom I am still in touch with today. What amazed me
most was that people can have so little (compared to a North
American life style) but still appear so at peace with themselves.
Highlight of the trip for me was definitely meeting the Karmapa,
followed closely by meeting Ghandi's grandson. I was able to
volunteer for Tenzin Palmo's tour when it passed through Toronto.
I have pictures of her holding Naomi. I think that Ani-la was quite
struck with her.
The Himalayas will blow anyone anyway who chooses to go to
Dharamsala. They are absolulety majestic. I fell in love with your
house. I can still picture the view whenever I think about it.
Dianne, I wish for you and Barb much success with your upcoming
tour. I am sure that all who participate will have an incredible
experience like I did."
- Michael Bachan